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How to use jquery ui in ReactJS

Understanding the Basics

Before we dive into how to use jQuery UI in ReactJS, let's get a handle on what these two technologies are. ReactJS is a JavaScript library that's used for building user interfaces, specifically for single-page applications. On the other hand, jQuery UI is a set of user interface interactions, effects, widgets, and themes built on top of the jQuery JavaScript Library.

Why Combine jQuery UI and ReactJS?

You might be wondering, "Why would I want to use jQuery UI in ReactJS?" Well, jQuery UI has some cool widgets and plugins like datepickers, dialog boxes, sliders, etc. that you might want to use in your React app.

But isn't React supposed to replace jQuery? Yes, and no. React is excellent for building large scale applications with data that changes over time. However, it doesn't come with ready-made components. That's where jQuery UI comes in. It provides you with a rich set of ready-made components that you can use to enhance your React application.

Now that we have a basic understanding of what ReactJS and jQuery UI are and why you might want to use them together, let's see how we can do this.

Installing jQuery and jQuery UI

First, you need to install jQuery and jQuery UI in your React project. You can do this using npm (Node Package Manager), which is a package manager for the JavaScript programming language.

Open up your terminal and navigate to your project's directory. Then run the following commands:

npm install jquery --save
npm install jquery-ui --save

These commands will install jQuery and jQuery UI and save them as dependencies in your package.json file.

Importing jQuery and jQuery UI in Your Component

After installing, you need to import them into your component. Here's how to do this:

import $ from 'jquery';
import 'jquery-ui/ui/widgets/datepicker';

The $ symbol is a common alias for jQuery. The second line imports the datepicker widget from jQuery UI. You can change 'datepicker' to any other widget that you want to use.

Using jQuery UI Widgets in Your Component

Now that we have imported jQuery and the jQuery UI widget, it's time to use it in our component. For this example, we will use the datepicker widget.

Here's the skeleton of a React component:

class MyComponent extends React.Component {
  componentDidMount() {


  render() {
    return (
      <input id="my-datepicker" />

export default MyComponent;

In your componentDidMount() method, you initialize your datepicker:

componentDidMount() {

And there you go! You now have a datepicker in your React component.

Handling Events

What if you want to do something when the user selects a date? jQuery UI widgets often come with events that you can listen to. The datepicker widget has an onSelect event that fires when the user selects a date.

Here's how you can listen to this event:

componentDidMount() {
    onSelect: (dateText, inst) => {

In this example, we pass an object to the datepicker() method. This object has an onSelect property, which is a function that gets called whenever the user selects a date.

Cleaning Up

Last but not least, don't forget to clean up! When your component unmounts, you should destroy your datepicker to avoid any potential memory leaks.

componentWillUnmount() {


And there you have it! You've successfully integrated a jQuery UI widget into your React component. As you can see, it's like fitting an old key into a shiny new lock. Sure, it might be a bit unorthodox and some purists might scoff at the idea, but if it gets the job done, why not?

In the end, programming is all about solving problems. If using jQuery UI with React helps you solve a problem more efficiently, then it's a good solution. But remember, with great power comes great responsibility. jQuery is a powerful tool, but it can make your code messy and hard to manage if not used properly. So use it wisely and always keep in mind the principles of good software design.

So go ahead, experiment with other jQuery UI widgets, explore its rich API, and see how you can use it to enhance your React applications. Happy coding!